2012 Wow Events
Finally, I found time to just sit and write endlessly. Ha! I kept on finding a suitable time to write but somehow when I managed, I always ended up thinking where I should start. Maybe I will just let it all out in one writing, ne?
My first 6 months of 2012 was just full of confusion. (That’s way too serious to start, I think?) I was standing between two choices. I was offered to study abroad. The perks are almost tempting. It has all the good points. But, blame me for my idiosyncrasy, I declined the offer because of one simple reason, it will not be in Japan.
I was having second thoughts if I should submit my scholarship application this year for Japan. But every time I assess my commitments, it seemed like 2012 is not the right time. But then again, I was also pressured by the fact that I need to extend another year. I kept on telling myself “Again?…..” every year for the past 3 years.
Giving up a portion of my time has not always been an option ever since this dream subdued me. Unluckily, I learned about this thing called “waiting” in the hardest way. I have been running around for more than 3 years and yet I feel like I only made few steps. But a friend told me that I should not look at 2012 as another year of waiting, but continue on living the year like I am preparing myself for something perfect and wonderful.
And so I decided to finish my Thesis 1 and advance my Nihongo.
The first phase of my thesis took 1 year to complete. Here’s my calculation what happened in those 12 months. The first 3 months after my thesis topic was approved, I did nothing. Seriously. Maybe I got exhausted with my busy routine: going to office 8 am to 5 pm, analyze case studies, sleep almost every night at 3 am while I also attend Nihongo classes thrice a week. The next 6 months was a mix of research for articles and journals and stress on thinking if those articles and journals were really relevant in my thesis. I was trying to read everything but suddenly I started questioning my thesis topic. I was having doubts if I was really going somewhere with all the 100 articles I was reading. I and Sensei decided to stop our Nihongo class so I can have enough time and concentration on my thesis. She asked me to discuss with her my findings then she helped me how to look at everything without getting puzzled. She probably noticed me dizzying out in our classes and maybe she also got tired of getting wrong and dim-witted answers during class. (Gomen, sensei. Ehk! Demo, zutto arigatou!). The last 3 months…ha!… those 3 months were the most busy months I ever had since my Masteral began. The patience and expertise of my thesis adviser really helped me. He was really pushing me to finish it on time and sharing everything I needed to learn and discover without getting off from my thesis objective. Haha! (Thanks po, Sir!) I still have Thesis 2 that I did not enroll this last quarter for a good reason: JLPT N4. More of that later.
October and November was outrageous. I went to Yunnan, China for 16 days. Five days were spent traveling alone. This was my biggest travel leap! I decided to go to Yunnan because of an amazing photo I saw in 2009. Hahaha! Crazy? Yes.
I and a friend planned the travel for 1.5 years. I saved every day from January 1 of 2012 until the last day of September. I wanted to graduate from touring the urban cities to exploring an authentic culture and virgin nature. I studied in a Chinese school for 11 years and have amazing Chinese friends for 20 years but I still got culture shocked with China. The adventure we had in Yunnan was a Classic Travel. It was like no other. Hohoho!
After I arrived from my Yunnan trip with a Nihongo textbook in one hand, I went straight to making up for all the lectures that I missed. I was still having body aches from exploration in Yunnan when I realized that I need to hasten my review for JLPT. Hahahaha! But seriously, the Yunnan trip gave me another perspective how I will go forth with my next life plans. =)
Halfway through my review, I stopped believing myself that I can suck up everything I thought I need to learn in Nihongo. Sure, I should be fully prepared for the exam. But somehow, the more I get too caught up with all the grammar and vocabulary, I was also taking a step back from just simply enjoying the language. Seeing my co-N4 takers, like Iris-chan and Rica-chan, made me feel like a pretender. They were obviously enjoying the language which made Nihongo very natural for them. They can talk in Nihongo whenever they feel expressing themselves. Right there, when they speak, I was always standing asking why I did not understand a simple phrase that I should know in the first place. Sensei told me: “You are already in Intermediate. You should already know this.”
Maybe, I was really caught up in achieving my dream to get to Japan right away. I wanted a shortcut, really and desperately needed to have one. But then, if it is not yet my time, then it will not be. I remember the very first day of Basic 1 class back in 2010, I was laughing inside at myself while I listened to Hiragana being pronounced slowly before us by our Sensei. It was a very pure joy of laugh seeing myself finally decided something for the next 40 years. It felt so destined. I was enjoying learning Nihongo. I knew then that I made the best decision in my life. Just a week before the JLPT exam (oh my!), I finally learned to just let go all the pressures of achieving something and just enjoy the journey (and enjoy the language!). Maybe, it was not really about arriving to my dream that matters, but how I will enjoy the journey of mishaps, failures and humility.
I finally talked about my goal of studying in Japan in our Livewire group in office. I knew then that I need to be honest to everyone asking about why I do the things I am doing. I just want to claim my dream all out. I will not coat it up anymore for one simple stupid but funny personal reason:
Dream can come true and I am on my way to my Dream.
Happy Holidays, Everyone!